Adrafinil is a mild stimulant that is metabolized into Modafinil when taken. It, therefore, has almost the same effects as Modafinil, but is less powerful and takes longer to kick in.


  • Keeps you alert and awake for hours [1][2][3][4]
  • Increases concentration and attentiveness [5][4]
  • Mood booster, helpful for treatment of depression [6]
  • Treats bipolar disorder, cocaine dependence, parkinson’s disease, and schizophrenia [7][8][9][10][11]
  • Cognitive enhancer improves working memory and pattern recognition [12][13][14][4]
  • Weight loss effects reduces appetite [15]

What Is Adrafinil?

Adrafinil is a mild stimulant affecting the central nervous system. It is commonly used without a prescription by people who need to stay awake and alert for long periods of time. This nootropic is the prodrug to Modafinil. Because of this, Adrafinil and Modafinil have almost identical pharmacological effects.

Adrafinil was discovered in the late 1970s by scientists working for the pharmaceutical company, Lafon. Lafon is the same company that later developed Modafinil. One huge difference between these two nootropics is that Modafinil is classified as a controlled substance in the United States while Adrafinil is not.

Adrafinil Dosage Information

A single 300mg tablet is sufficient for those trying to stay awake and focused for long periods of time. Dosages of 600 – 900mg will keep you much more awake and focused but increase the chance of unwanted side effects. People have reported severe insomnia following larger dosages of Adrafinil.

How Does Adrafinil Work?

Adrafinil is the prodrug to Modafinil. This means that Adrafinil is administered in an inactive form. Once ingested, this inactive form is metabolized into an active metabolite. In this case, Adrafinil is metabolized to Modafinil.

Once metabolized to Modafinil, it works in a similar fashion. Recent studies suggest that Modafinil affects dopamine transporters by inhibiting the breakdown of dopamine. This means that your body is not absorbing dopamine leading to much greater dopamine levels. [16] Greatly elevated dopamine levels result in Adrafinil having many nootropic properties.

Safety and Side Effects of Adrafinil

Even though Adrafinil is considered to be very safe it does carry certain side effects. Minor side effects include irritation or aggression, stomach pain, and skin alteration. More serious side effects include liver disease, renal disorders.

I recommend that one only uses Adrafinil sparingly. Only use Adrafinil daily for prolonged periods of time under the supervision of a physician. It is also important to note that Adrafinil is on the list of substances prohibited for athletic competition by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Adrafinil FAQ

Below are some of the most commonly asked questions about Adrafinil. .

Should I Use Adrafinil?

Adrafinil is an excellent nootropic to take when you need to stay awake and concentrate for extended periods of time. Think of it as a legal substitute for Adderall. I would not recommend that you take Adrafinil daily because you will build a tolerance and greatly increase your risk for more serious side effects.

Because Adrafinil is the prodrug to Modafinil, I recommend you take Modafinil instead if possible.

What Are Some Adrafinil Studies?

A study conducted in 2000 looked at Adrafinil’s effects on behavior and cognition in canines. The study indicated that a single dose of Adrafinil was effective and long-lasting as a behavioral stimulant with cognitive enhancement properties.
Cited Studies

1.  Erman MK, Rosenberg R, For The U S Modafinil Shift Work Sleep Disorder Study Group. “Modafinil for excessive sleepiness associated with chronic shift work sleep disorder: effects on patient functioning and health-related quality of life.” Primary Care Companion to the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 2007;9(3):188-94. Full Text

2.  Czeisler CA, Walsh JK, Roth T, Hughes RJ, Wright KP, Kingsbury L, Arora S, Schwartz JRL, Niebler GE, Dinges DF (August 2005). “Modafinil for Excessive Sleepiness Associated with Shift-Work Sleep Disorder”N Engl J Med 353 (5): 476–486. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa041292PMID 16079371

3.  Provigil (Modafinil) Site.” 24 December 1998 [1]


5.  Biederman J, Pliszka SR (March 2008). “Modafinil improves symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder across subtypes in children and adolescents”. J. Pediatr. 152 (3): 394–9. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2007.07.052PMID 18280848

6.  Fava M, Thase ME, DeBattista C, Doghramji K, Arora S, Hughes RJ (2007). “Modafinil augmentation of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor therapy in MDD partial responders with persistent fatigue and sleepiness”. Ann Clin Psychiatry 19 (3): 153–9. doi:10.1080/10401230701464858PMID 17729016


8. PMID 20673554.

9. Dackis CA, Kampman KM, Lynch KG, Pettinati HM, O’Brien CP (January 2005). “A double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of modafinil for cocaine dependence”. Neuropsychopharmacology 30 (1): 205–11. doi:10.1038/sj.npp.1300600PMID 15525998

10. van Vliet SA, Vanwersch RA, Jongsma MJ, van der Gugten J, Olivier B, Philippens IH (September 2006). “Neuroprotective effects of modafinil in a marmoset Parkinson model: behavioral and neurochemical aspects”Behav Pharmacol 17 (5–6): 453–62. doi:10.1097/00008877-200609000-00011PMID 16940766

11. Turner DC, Clark L, Pomarol-Clotet E, McKenna P, Robbins TW, Sahakian BJ (July 2004). “Modafinil improves cognition and attentional set shifting in patients with chronic schizophrenia”. Neuropsychopharmacology 29 (7): 1363–73. doi:10.1038/sj.npp.1300457PMID 15085092

12. Turner DC, Robbins TW, Clark L, Aron AR, Dowson J, Sahakian BJ (2003). “Cognitive enhancing effects of modafinil in healthy volunteers”. Psychopharmacology (Berl.) 165(3): 260–9. doi:10.1007/s00213-002-1250-8PMID 12417966

13. Randall DC, Viswanath A, Bharania P, Elsabagh SM, Hartley DE, Shneerson JM, File SE (2005). “Does modafinil enhance cognitive performance in young volunteers who are not sleep-deprived?”. J Clin Psychopharmacol 25 (2): 175–9. doi:10.1097/ 15738750

14. Baranski JV, Pigeau R, Dinich P, Jacobs I (2004). “Effects of modafinil on cognitive and meta-cognitive performance”. Hum Psychopharmacol 19 (5): 323–32. doi:10.1002/hup.596PMID 15252824

15. Perez GA, Haney M, Foltin RW, Hart CL. (October 2008). “Modafinil decreases food intake in humans subjected to simulated shift work”Pharmacol Biochem Behav 90 (4): 717–22. doi:10.1016/j.pbb.2008.05.018PMID 18573275

16. Zolkowska, D.; Jain, R.; Rothman, R. B.; Partilla, J. S.; Roth, B. L.; Setola, V.; Prisinzano, T. E.; Baumann, M. H. (2009). “Evidence for the involvement of dopamine transporters in behavioral stimulant effects of modafinil.”The Journal of pharmacology and experimental therapeutics 329 (2): 738–746. doi:10.1124/jpet.108.146142PMC 2672878PMID 19197004